Life Sciences Research for Lifelong Health

Events & Activities

As part of BI’s Athena SWAN project the team organise a variety of internal events and activities with the aim of engaging staff and improving working culture. We also participate in many external activities with our wider regional network. The AS team are responsible for monitoring gender balance in areas such as committee membership, recruitment and scientific speakers.

‘My Life In Science’ Seminar Series
The ‘My Life In Science’ seminar series provides an opportunity for inspiring role models to share their science, experiences and career stories as well as their thoughts on gender and equality in science with scientists at Babraham. Previous speakers include Prof Michael Wakelam, Prof Jackie Hunter CBE, Prof Anne Ferguson-Smith, Prof Dame Janet Thornton and Prof Doreen Cantrell.


Lecture 2
Lecture 1

International Women’s Day
IWD programmeEach year the BI Athena SWAN team organise a celebration for International Women’s Day. In 2015 we celebrated inspirational female scientists from Babraham and Cambridge. In March 2016 we celebrated the success of some of our female alumni. This year the day was also celebrated in the Nursery and in our Biological Support Unit.

Lunchtime seminars includes topics such as How to be a Mentee - a seminar for those who would like to be mentored, covering the process, benefits and how to get the best out of your relationship with your mentor.

As part of the Athena SWAN project team members carry out one to one consultations with staff and students. Our first consultation process was in 2014, and this is repeated every two years. The team interview a representative number of all group leaders, post docs, research assistants, students, facilities, support and administrative staff, all information is anonymised. The team aim to find out what is good about Babraham and what could be improved, we want to see how views have changed over time and get new ideas to help us to improve life at the institute.

Equality and Diversity Group
With a broader scope the equality and diversity discussion group meet at lunchtimes to discuss a recent research paper on the topic or to watch a TED talk and then discuss views.

Athena SWAN Library
A range of titles covering gender, work life balance, gender balance in the work place are available for staff to borrow. Book reviews or comments are welcome on our internal discussion board.

Athena SWAN Resources Box
A resources box to help parents and carers who need to have their children at work with them for a short time is available. The box provides worksheets, colouring in, books and toys to help to entertain children for a short time.

As well as internal events the Babaraham Institute Athena SWAN team also work with external groups such as awareness groups and other research institutions to engage and influence the wider scientific community on issues relating to gender balance in science. We have international partners through our H2020 funded project LIBRA. The Athena SWAN team work alongside many other groups across the institute, we work with Babraham’s Post Doc Committee, KEC committee, and sports and social club, to develop ideas or organise events.

We are partners on a H2020 funded project LIBRA,, which brings together ten partner research institutes with the main aim of achieving gender equality in academia. The aims of this project clearly dovetail with our Athena SWAN project.

For further information contact Laura Norton